Aubrey Beaumont is a minister with three grown children, a daughter who’s becoming a successful attorney and two sons making their own ways in their professional fields. He’s largely raised them on his own; his wife Joanna abandoned the family some 15 years earlier. Her drug addiction led her away from the people who loved her and whom she loved.
During a hospital visit, Beaumont sees a room being guarded by local police; the patient is in some kind of witness protection program. The patient turns out to be Joanna, who’s dying of cancer and is being protected in return for testimony against a drug and prostitution lord in the Washington, D.C. area. She asks for a visit from Beaumont, who’s never filed for divorce even though he had little to no hope of every seeing his wife again. Joanna’s desire to see her husband sets into motion a host of both expected and unexpected events.
Hosea’s Heart by Linda Wood Rondeau is the story of Beaumont, Joanna, their children, and friends. It’s a contemporary retelling of the story of the prophet Hosea and his wife in the Old Testament of the Bible. Hosea was commanded by God to take a wife named Gomer who was a known prostitute, as a demonstration of God’s love for Israel in spite of Israel’s unfaithfulness. Like their counterparts in Hosea’s Heart, Hosea and Gomer have three children, two sons and a daughter.
Rondeau is the author of several novels in the Christian fiction and Christian romance genres, including Fiddler’s Song, the Other Side of Darkness, A Father’s Prayer, Miracle on Maple Street, The Fifteenth Article, and A Wonderful Love. She’s won a Selah Award and been a Carol Award finalist. She’s also a speaker and writing consultant, and blogs at Snark and Sensibility. She lives in Maryland.
Hosea’s Heart contains a number of coincidences – the government attorney who puts her in witness protection turns out to be the father of her daughter, for example – and a few unexpected developments. But it is a sweet story of a man’s faithfulness.
Top photograph by Aaron Burden via. Used with permission.